What I’ve discovered is, there’s a separation between church and state — in other words, the editors of most magazines and newspapers don’t care how long you’ve been writing advertising copy, it doesn’t make you a “writer” and it doesn’t qualify you to be a “journalist.”
In that world a writer is not a writer is not a writer.
For me, that all changed recently, when I was invited to do some writing for Get Leashed Magazine, a “digital hub for urban pet owners.”
I first met Dominika Gorecki, the Get Leashed founder and GM, last year. She was consulting with a tech start-up, was looking for a freelance writer with some financial industry experience, and was referred to me by a mutual acquaintance.
Needless to say I was chuffed when, a couple of months ago, she asked me to join the Get Leashed editorial team. But what really made me happy was what she wanted me to write about:
My section is called “Impact” and in it, I cover the kind of issues people tend not to talk about. The tough stuff. The stuff we prefer to ignore, turn away from like, for example, the first story I wrote on animal sexual abuse.
Perfect casting for me, because I’ve always been an activist at heart. A friend of mine used to refer to me as Fransi vigilante. I hate injustice of any kind and have always spoken out for those who, for whatever reason, can’t.
And now I’m getting to do it for all the four-legged victims of all kinds of unspeakable cruelty and neglect.
Seeing as how I’m already shamelessly self promoting, what would be the harm in providing you with links to a few more of my stories? One’s on a parasite outdoor cats can transmit to humans, that can cause schizophrenia and the other’s about discrimination against pets and their owners.
On a slightly more upbeat note, here’s a piece I wrote on a lovely golden retriever, Piper, who, along with her two-legged companion, volunteers at a residence for people with alzheimers.
Thanks for indulging me. I hope these stories, and those I write in the future, do some good; and I also hope you’ll be encouraged to speak up about injustice (be it animal or human) in your part of the world. It won’t go away if no one knows it exists.
LATE BREAKING NEWS: SINCE BEING PUBLISHED IN GET LEASHED MAGAZINE, THE STORY I WROTE ON ANIMAL SEXUAL ABUSE HAS ALSO APPEARED IN HUFFINGTON POST CANADA.